Wednesday, 20 April 2011

Why should I invest in a career coach?

We often don’t think twice about going out and spending money on a few drinks or a meal after a bad day at work so what stops us spending money on our future when things aren’t going so well?  You have perhaps been unhappy with your career for a while, thinking of a career change or about getting a new job, but have yet to do anything about it.  You have heard of career coaching but unsure how this will help you and so why should you invest in this? 

Let me begin by asking you some questions...

1.       What do you want from your working life? 

When I ask people this question, the answers often include:
·         Fulfilment
·         Satisfaction
·         Happiness
·         Enjoyment
·         Reward
·         Challenge
·         Balanced Lifestyle

2.       How long have you wanted these things for?

3.       Where would you like to be in 6 months/ 1 year/2 years?
·         In a new job?
·         Retraining?
·         Pursuing a career change?
·         Applying for a promotion?
·         Setting up my own business?

4.       Imagine you achieved all this through working with a career coach, what would these results be worth to you? 

...and it is as simple as that, a career coach can help you achieve what you want in your career, more quickly and easily than doing it alone.   Things you have wanted for ages, but procrastination has got in your way, are now possible.  A short term investment in a career coach can go a long way in enabling you to enjoy your future career.

Yes, it is this straightforward!

If you would like to know how career coaching works click here to have a look at some coaching factsheets.

Tuesday, 12 April 2011

Have you experienced the two year itch in your career or job?

When will I be able to change jobs?  How will my career develop?  Do I want a career change?  If these questions sound familiar to you, what do you do to find the answers?

It is really common for individuals to start reviewing their career having been in a job or role for two years or more.  

We start a new job with such enthusiasm and motivation, jumping out of bed on a Monday morning keen to ensure we get ahead in our careers.  We want to perform well and develop a fantastic and fulfilling career, until that well known ‘Monday morning feeling’ gradually creeps in.  As time has moved on, we have settled into our new job and are familiar with our day to day role.  We become restless and start wondering where our career is going. 

If you have got to this point, how can you now restore the motivation and enthusiasm you once had when you started your new job?  How can you prevent your 2 year itch developing for the next 2, 3 or even 4 years?  It all comes down to two main options:

Often it is much easier to simply stay put than find a new job.  If you decide this is the right career path for you, then finding techniques to improve your motivation should be the first item on your to-do list.  Perhaps take this opportunity to review where you are in your career, what you have achieved and what you want to achieve next.  Start planning your career path, set yourself challenges at work and establish ways to achieve your ambitions.  Make sure you tell people at work about your career ideas and plans.  This will give you the best opportunity of achieving your ambitions and restoring a good Monday morning feeling.

If you decide changing career or job is the best career choice for you, take time to evaluate your career options, working out what you want and exploring possibilities and opportunities.  Talk to people to find out more about specific roles, jobs and careers.  This is the best way to discover the best job move or career choice for you. 

For further help, click here for my previous blogs and free career resources.

Remember, the more consideration you give to your career development, the better your decisions are going to be.   

Monday, 4 April 2011

Are you a lawyer considering a career change?

Through my work as a career coach, many lawyers approach me saying they do not want to waste any more time and want a career change.  They have been unsatisfied with their legal career for years and as a consequence feel unfulfilled, desperately trying to picture a life with a rewarding job.  Does this resonate with you?

If you are considering a career change, take a moment to consider what is stopping you from enjoying your career in law.  The current negative trends in the press about lawyers leaving the legal profession may be responsible.  However, what about the control you have over your working life? 

As a lawyer, you have to manage a number of work demands within your job in law whilst achieving the best results.  These can be dealing with difficult clients, taking responsibility for a heavy case load or achieving chargeable time targets.  The demands you experience are numerous and mean that you are working under immense pressure every day.

Now think about what action you take to look after yourself when the pressure is getting to you and you are trying to deal with the inevitable challenges at work.  Do you react by just getting on with it because you feel there is nothing else you can do and you just have to cope with it?  You may even think you can’t comment on your heavy workload because you should be happy to have a job. 
This is all perfectly understandable.  However, this can lead to lawyers experiencing increased levels of stress as they become overwhelmed by the challenges they face.  Ultimately, they dislike their career in law and want a career change.

Whilst pursuing a career change can be right for some lawyers, there is an alternative option which can be equally effective and that is to take action to overcome the obstacles in your way.  Such action can often be as simple as asking for help more frequently, instead of sitting at your desk struggling for hours.   You don’t have to come up with the perfect solution at first.  If the action you take does not work, stop it and try something else.  Just changing the way you respond to challenges will relieve the pressure you place upon yourself and make way for an enjoyable legal career. 

Still wondering whether a career change is right for you and would like to know more about other careers, roles and jobs?  Click here for my factsheet for career and job ideas within and out of the legal sector.  You will also find resources on how a career coach may be able to help you.